Once again this year, businesses are getting ready to slash prices for the Cranbrook Black Friday event Nov. 21.
Joey Hoeschsmann, chair of the Black Friday event, said this is the third year that it’s been put on as a city-wide event and this year there is a new website where businesses can register at www.cranbrookblackfriday.com.
“Essentially it’s a really good communication tool for us as well,” Hoeschsmann said. “We can communicate with the business owners, we’ve got best practices on there. We have all the rate sheets from newspapers and radio and all that good stuff. They can actually put their offers on that website.”
That also means that if you are a customer, on the day of, you’ll be able to go to the website and see all of the businesses participating as well as their special offers.
“The whole initiative started as we were seeing some leakage going down to the States, it came off a 10 per cent shift initiative,” he said.
He said that of course as Cranbrook residents, we travel all over to places like Calgary and Spokane.
“And when we travel we spend some money there,” he said. “But when you’re there and you are at a shopping centre, just think for a moment ‘can I get this locally?’ Not all of it, you’re going to buy stuff, just 10 per cent of the things you buy, could you buy it in the local area?”
Hoeschsmann said it’s a two way street though and it’s up to businesses to also give customers a reason to want to shop local as well.
“So that’s how we came up with the whole slogan for Black Friday, which is live here, spend here,” he said.
For businesses, Hoeschsmann said it’s an opportunity to showcase your business and also an opportunity to drum up sales.
“There are lots of studies that are out there that talk about, especially with local independent business, how that dollar spent locally gets spent again in the community and continues to drive the economy,” he said. “So when that dollar leaves it’s a huge loss, it’s not just that one dollar that was spent.”
He said it comes down to the cost and not just the price.
“A snowmobile might be $2,000 less in the states, but you have to hop in your truck and drive across the border, fill up with gas and pay duty when you come across the border and register it a certain way,” he said. “I think people need to consider the cost, not the price.”
Last year was a success as well, with somewhere between 60 and 70 businesses participating.
“Even if you’re not a retailer, there are other ways you can participate,” he said, to businesses.
He suggested restaurants, hotels and other businesses could have discounts on services.